Senior Program Officer, Industry Development (WSH)

Senior Program Officer, Industry Development (WSH)

Organization: Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Apply By: 05 May 2019

Location: New Delhi(Delhi)

About The Organization:

Based in Seattle, the foundation is led by CEO Sue Desmond-Hellmann and co-chair William H. Gates Sr., under the direction of Bill and Melinda Gates and Warren Buffett. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation works to help all people lead healthy and productive lives. In developing countries, it focuses on improving people’s health and giving them the chance to lift themselves out of hunger and extreme poverty.

Job Description:


The goal of the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene program strategy (WSH) is to enable universal access to sustainable sanitation services by supporting the development of radically new sanitation technologies as well as markets for new sanitation products and services.4.5 billion people worldwide lack access to safely managed sanitation, and millions of these people live in dwellings whose sanitary facilities, if any, are connected to poorly managed septic tanks, cesspools or latrines. Health impacts of poorly managed sanitation are severe, resulting in the preventable deaths of approximately 500,000 young children, and lifelong stunting and cognitive impairment of many more children.

Traditional sewer networks have historically been the preferred sanitation solution among urban planners and governments. However, this large and centralized infrastructure is often not the most sustainable, nor financially or technically feasible solution in developing countries, and often does not reach informal settlement populations and other vulnerable groups for a range of reasons including sewers not extending beyond central business districts, challenging topography, lack of legal recognition by government, or project cost estimates that don’t include the costs to connect poor households to sewers. These factors make non-sewered sanitation solutions (NSS), also known as onsite sanitation systems, more context-appropriate and adaptable in many urban contexts.


  • The Senior Program Officer (SPO) will be responsible for stimulating the introduction, adoption and scale of innovative sanitation technologies in India. You will accomplish this by developing a strong network of commercial, technical and related ecosystem partners to ensure the sustained supply and support of new technologies and innovations as well as by extending advances made in urban sanitation to new states in India using existing platforms created by the team.
  • Stimulating adoption of innovative sanitation technology:  In strong coordination with WSH team members from both India and the US (e.g. Seattle, WA), support the commercialization, market development, adoption and scale up of breakthrough sanitation technologies such as the Reinvented Toilet and Omni Processor.
  • Catalyze FSM scale: Build strong relationships with government partners at city, state and national level to continue attention on sustainable, safe sanitation for all. Extend relationships in new states to focus on FSM while continuing to build momentum and commitment to the sanitation agenda overall.
  • You will report to the Deputy Director/India Country Lead for WSH.


  • Grant Making & Management: Identify, develop, structure, and manage new grants and contracts that execute against our programmatic goals. These investments will build upon and develop pro-poor inclusive sustainable service models; demonstrate and scale innovative sanitation technologies; and create viable FSM business models within the framework of both public and large consumer groups.
  • Market Development: In collaboration with the Seattle-based WSH program strategy team, coordinate with business partners to promote the adoption and successful commercialization of sanitation innovation.  Work with existing WSH commercial partners to design and execute go-to-market strategies that enable the advancement of this new sanitation industry in India. Develop a pipeline of potential Indian commercial partners and work with WSH technology partners to broker deals for commercializing and taking products to market in India and abroad.  Advise commercial partners on their own go-to-market strategies for the Indian market and partner with them on product roll-outs in India.  Advocate for policies, regulations and standards that boost new sanitation technology adoption. Support the development of a local ecosystem of service providers, operators, manufacturers/ distributors, etc. engaged in the Reinvented Toilet and Omni Processor technologies.
  • Partner relationships: Develop relationships within the sector to find the most promising opportunities and engage relevant actors (who may not necessarily be from the sanitation sector) as innovations are developing. Expand the pool of partners engaged with sanitation that serves the poor. Support the creation and development of multi-stakeholder partnerships (e.g. government, city authority, private sector and development partners) to scale the best practices. Interact and communicate clearly and consistently with grantees and partners in the field.
  • Represent the foundation: To key external constituencies, including participation in conferences and meetings and to government, private sector leaders, and key funding institutions. Disseminate our emerging experience and approach to inclusive non-sewered sanitation and the role of transformative technologies.

Core Knowledge & Skills:

The organization is looking for people who enjoy the opportunity of working on complex problems and collectively creating solutions that have the potential for transformative change in the lives of people around the world. You should be prepared to work across a diverse set of disciplines and expertise, all the while being a team player, with a demonstrated ability to work with flexibility, efficiency and diplomacy in an exciting, challenging environment.

You will be experienced engaging with both Indian corporates /business leaders / and senior government officials:

  • A strong familiarity and experience with how Indian companies approach business opportunities to commercialize and launch new product categories or significant innovation is essential to meet the challenges listed above. You must have experience on market development strategies and be able to represent our technologies and products, with a strong business analytical approach.
  • A strong understanding of government procurement procedures to support commercial partners, with experience working with responsible government entities in this process. 

Qualifications and Experience:

  • Sanitation or water sector experience desired.
  • Significant experience and proven skills engaging with government officials at senior levels.
  • Experience working with a range of clients, colleagues, consultants, and other partners with broad exposure to private, public and international development sectors.
  • Strategic problem-solving skills to structure the analysis needed to address a complex and ambiguous question; within the resources and time constraints provided.
  • Demonstrated initiative to solve unstructured problems with little oversight, creativity, high energy, and a positive attitude.
  • Top-notch organizational and project management skills and an ability to prioritize work based on minimal direction and multiple competing priorities.
  • Excellent skills in relationship management, communication, collaboration and presentation.
  • Strong project management capabilities.
  • Undergraduate degree in Business, Engineering, Sciences, Planning, or equivalent experience. Advanced degree (e.g. MBA, MA/MSc, PhD) strongly preferred.
  • Comfortable in a wide range of cultural, geographic and operational situations, demonstrating culturally sensitive behavior with a diverse range of people.
  • Ability to travel up to 30% of time as necessary.
  • Commitment to the foundation’s core values, mission and programs with an approach that is consistent with the foundation’s guiding principles while holding oneself to the highest ethical standards.
How to apply

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